§ 4. Mr. Peter Mills
asked the Minister of Overseas Development what aid her Department is now giving in the fields of agriculture, education and technology.
§ Mr. Mills
I agree with the hon. Gentleman that this form of aid is what is needed, but can he say what has happened to the much publicised plan to give away to overseas countries surplus food grown on our farms? This was put about quite a bit in the West Country by various Labour candidates, and I shall be interested to know what has happened to the plan.
§ Following is the information:
1. AgricultureAid to agriculture falls under four heads:
- (a) Technical assistance, which is the most significant contribution although not the most costly.
- (b) Training.
- (c) Capital aid, including agricultural research projects.
- (d) Multilateral aid (FAO contribution).As regards technical assistance aid, while requests exceed supply—there are at present some 180 unfilled vacancies—the short fall is a small proportion of posts filled. In 1964 1,342 Overseas Service Aid Scheme posts were filled and 61 technical assistance posts. The demand is for all types of agricultural experts, including general extension workers and specialists such as entomologists, plant pathologists and soil chemists, and is world wide, but concentrated largely in East and Central Africa.In addition there is a scheme under which the National Agricultural Advisory Service and the Department of Agriculture for Scotland carry additional posts on establishment (at present 30) to enable experienced officers to be seconded overseas. There are also institutions of the O.D.M., such as the Overseas Liaison Unit of the National Institute of Agricultural Engineering, Land Resources Division of the Directorate of Overseas Surveys, Tropical Products Institute and Tropical Stored Products Centre, which provide services, training and advice. Firms of agricultural consultants are used to undertake, in particular, feasibility studies such as a sugar1485project in Nigeria. An agricultural mission made up of some 12 British experts in various forms of tropical agriculture, is in Bolivia.Under training there is a studentship scheme (at present 20 per year) for training British graduates for overseas service in agriculture.Recent examples of substantial aid for agriculture in the form of capital aid are the agricultural schemes in the Uganda loan for the establishment of a sisal industry, sugar development and group farms mechanisation.Estimated expenditure on aid to agriculture during 1964 is £1,885,000, which excludes the cost of the Anti-Locust Research Centre, £140,000, and Desert Locust control, £12,000. New commitments were entered into in respect of grants, £3,793,000, and loans, £4,520,000. In addition expenditure totalling £12,635,000 was made in 1964 in respect of commitments entered into in previous years.
2. EducationBritain's total direct expenditure on aid towards education and training overseas in the financial year 1964–65, including Commonwealth Education Co-operation (C.E.C.) is estimated at over £16½ million, of which approximately £12½ million relates to the Commonwealth. In addition to this Britain makes substantial contributions to various international agencies, providing aid inter-alia for education; in particular U.N.E.S.C.O., the Expanded Programme of Technical Assistance and the Special Fund.A breakdown of the figures and a description of the main components are given below.
Study in BritainThere are over 42,000 Commonwealth students of all categories in Britain (of whom about 1,000 have their costs borne under C.E.C. arrangements). Anticipated expenditure by Britain on training in this country of students from developing Commonwealth countries, other than those here under C.E.C. arrangements is £1.7 million. The large numbers who come to Britain under their own or their Governments' arrangements obtain a substantial indirect benefit by attending institutions supported from public funds.
Teacher SupplyThe bulk of British expenditure on the supply of teachers for service in Commonwealth countries is given, not under C.E.C., but under the Overseas Service Aid Scheme (O.S.A.S). The O.S.A.S. provides a substantial proportion of the total emoluments of British expatriate personnel, including teachers, employed by certain Commonwealth Governments both dependent and independent. For 1964–65 the estimated expenditure on British teachers overseas under O.S.A.S. was £1.6 million. A new scheme for teachers for Nigeria has just been introduced, the cost of which is estimated at a total £1 million over the next five years.
Educational AdviceThis is not costly but is of central importance. In addition to the "Resident" Advisers of the Ministry of Overseas Develop- 1486 ment assistance is also obtained from the Inspectorate, Institutes of Education, under regional and other programmes of technical assistance, the Inter-University Council, and the Council for Technical Education and Training for Overseas Countries.
Aid for building and equipping teaching institutions overseasRecent examples include the £5 million grant for educational development in Nigeria; the £1 million grant for the University of Zambia; the £1 million grant to the university of East Africa; grants to establish a new university in the High Commission territories in Southern Africa, a College of Arts and Science as part of the University of the West Indies, in Barbados; the Delhi College of Engineering and Technology where the Ministry of Overseas Development and British industry are jointly providing £650,000 worth of equipment; and technical institutes in Jamaica and Zambia.
The work of the British CouncilAlthough financed from Information monies the work of the British Council forms an important part of the total educational effort, e.g. English Language teaching and teacher training, educational and scientific exchanges, the provision of textbooks and library services, the recruitment of staff for schools and universities overseas, and the welfare of Commonwealth students in Britain.
|Foreign and Commonwealth|
|C.D.W., Commonwealth Grants and Equipment||3,510,000|
|Teacher Supply under O.S.A.S.||1,600,000|
|Training in Britain under Regional Programmes||2,470,000|
|Low Priced Books||150,000|
3. TechnologyAid in the field of technology includes communications, architecture, engineering and works, industrial production and marketing, technology and geology.Estimated expenditure on aid to technology during 1964 is £4,050,000 which includes 1487 expenditure by the British Council in this field. New commitments were entered into in respect of grants, £451,000 and loans, £6,858,000, while expenditure totalling about £18 million was made in 1964 in respect of commitments entered into in previous years. £15,708,000 of this was for loans to Commonwealth countries from the E.C.G.D.The whole of the new commitments listed in the three fields will take some years to disburse, while all the figures given include only that expenditure which can be specifically identified with agriculture, education and technology.